Twenty four apprentices are to be taken on at BMW’s Ham’s Hall engine plant near Birmingham as part of a drive to create 200 new roles for young people across the UK this year.

The intake is set to double this year to 70 places at MINI’S three production sites across the UK as the plants prepare for the next model generation.

In addition, BMW and MINI dealerships are looking to recruit around 130 young people across the UK.

The Hams Hall engine plant has 24 places available while MINI Plant Oxford has 35 apprentice roles to fill. Another 11 apprenticeships are being created at the Plant Swindon pressings plant.

The apprenticeships last between three and four years and cover a wide range of skills from human resources and business to electrical maintenance and engineering. The training leads to an NVQ level three qualification and some apprentices will have the opportunity to progress right through to degree level in the course of their career at MINI.

Dr Juergen Hedrich, managing director, MINI Plant Oxford, said: "Investment in young people is a key part of our development strategy for the plants; therefore we are delighted to be able to offer young people the chance to join our modern apprenticeship scheme."

BMW and MINI dealerships in the UK will be recruiting around 130 apprentices. The programmes are in various disciplines ranging from service technician apprentice, parts advisor apprentice, motorcycle technician apprentice and body refinish/paint apprentices.

Tim Abbott, managing director of BMW Group UK, said: "Bringing new talent and fresh thinking into our dealerships is vital to allow us to provide the best possible service for our customers and so I am delighted that we will welcome around 130 new apprentices to our award- winning scheme in the UK."